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Fixed wireless Internet access in African schools

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Dr. John Naylon, CTO and co-founder, Cambridge Broadband Networks discusses why education is at the heart of the digital economy

The introduction of the internet into classrooms is a necessity for the digitisation of education. Much of the modern-day curriculum now incorporates online courses and requires students to have access to the web.

The development of better and more accessible internet access has tangible advantages for education. Teachers and students have new ways to study, plan class activities and present information. Web-based classes, interactive teaching and streamlined research methods are just a few examples of the positive impact being online has for education.

Connecting Africa

Every school child should be able to experience the benefits of this technology. According to the United Nations’ The State of Broadband report, 76% of European citizens do currently have access to the internet. Yet, by contrast, just 21.8% of citizens in Africa have internet access and, more surprising still, 52% of the world's population still have no internet access at all.

The link between internet access and the expansion of digital education, not to mention economic growth, are facts universally acknowledged. In fact, the digital dividend stipulates that, controlling for other factors, a 10% increase in broadband penetration causes GDP to increase by at least 1.4%. For communities in Africa that still lack connectivity, this represents a huge opportunity.

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